Configurable Machine Vision Software



Configurable Machine Vision Software
Configurable Machine Vision Software
NI Vision Builder for Automated Inspection
• Configure and deploy complete machine
vision applications without programming
• Communicate with PLCs and other
industrial devices
• Run as a stand-alone application or use
ActiveX to embed into an application
• Extend functionality using NI LabVIEW
NI Vision Acquisition (included)
Acquires from all NI vision hardware
Acquires from IEEE 1394 cameras
Acquires from GigE cameras
Reads and writes image files
Operating Systems
• Windows XP/2000/NT
• LabVIEW Real-Time
Run as a Stand-Alone Vision System
National Instruments Vision Builder for Automated Inspection
(Vision Builder AI) is configurable software for building, benchmarking,
and deploying machine vision applications. NI Vision Builder AI does not
require programming. A built-in deployment interface is included so you
can quickly deploy your inspection, guidance, and identification
applications. Also it includes the ability to set up complex pass/fail
decisions to control digital I/O devices and communicate with serial
or Ethernet devices such as PLCs, PACs, and HMIs.
Vision Builder AI includes a built-in deployment interface with which you
can quickly deploy your application once you have finished configuring
and benchmarking.
Integrate into a Larger Application
Use the Vision Builder AI ActiveX component to embed Vision Builder AI
inspections into your NI TestStand, LabVIEW, or Visual Basic programs.
Use the ActiveX control to develop an operator interface that (remotely)
views images and retrieves the results of each run.
Image Acquisition
Choose from several different hardware options within Vision Builder AI
for deploying your machine vision application. Whether you prefer low-cost
analog cameras; high-speed, high-resolution digital cameras; or easy-to-use
IEEE 1394 and GigE Vision cameras; NI has an image acquisition device
for your needs. In addition, you can deploy your machine vision system
using PCI or PCI Express boards, or upgrade to more rugged PXI and
Compact Vision System options.
Machine Vision Tools
A Better Way to Configure Vision Systems
For inspections that require conditional branches or iterative loops,
Vision Builder AI provides an innovative state-diagram-process model.
In this model, you configure each state to perform a certain action, from
acquiring images to reading text to communicating with PLCs. The results of
these steps determine which transition path is taken to the next state.
By using state diagrams, you can create seemingly complex machine vision
applications that provide the flexibility of a programming language with
the ease of use of a configuration environment. Not only are state
diagrams an intuitive way to represent machine vision applications, but
also they are self-documenting and easy to share among colleagues.
Vision Builder AI includes all the machine vision tools necessary
to build quality control, assembly verification, and industrial inspection
applications. Use Vision Builder AI to enhance images, locate features,
measure objects, check for presence, and read text and bar codes.
Advanced Decision Making
With the decision-making interface, you can define pass/fail criteria and
classify parts. You can set limits for each inspection step and also use
the intuitive decision-making interface to create complex decision
expressions for the entire system. You can route the results of these
decisions to digital lines, the user interface, or a serial port.
Configurable Machine Vision Software
Vision Software Capabilities
National Instruments vision software includes hundreds of image
processing and analysis functions. A subset of the tools available in the
Vision Development Module and Vision Builder AI are shown below.
You can use dimensional measurement or gauging
tools to obtain quantifiable, critical distance
measurements – such as distances, angles, areas,
line fits, circular fits, and counts.
Pattern and Geometric Matching
Bar Code Reader and Grader
Learn and locate objects and patterns in your images.
National Instruments patented matching algorithms
locate patterns fast with very high accuracy.
Read 1D bar codes as well as 2D codes like Data Matrix
and PDF 417. You can decipher codes applied through
ink jets, thermal transfer, laser etching, or dot peen.
Optical Character
Spatial Calibration
NI OCR functions use a trainable OCR algorithm
specifically designed to identify and verify all types
of fonts, characters, and symbols despite poor and
inconsistent image quality.
Particle Analysis
Use particle analysis to detect connected regions or
groupings of pixels in an image and make selected
measurements of those regions. Choose from more
than 80 unique measurements that return data in
both real-world and pixel values.
Color Inspection
Color matching quantifies which colors and how much
of each color exist in a region of an image and uses
this information to check if another image contains
the same colors in the same ratio.
Edge Detection
Use the edge detection tools to identify and locate
discontinuities in the pixel intensities of an image.
Find edges in order to align, measure, or detect
features in the image.
Object Classification
Classification is a tool for identifying an unknown
object by comparing its significant features to a set
of features that represent known samples.
Using spatial calibration functions, you can calibrate
your image to take accurate, real-world measurements
from images, regardless of camera perspective or
lens distortion.
Image Arithmetic and Logic Functions
Operators perform basic arithmetic and logical
operations on images. Use operators to add, subtract,
multiply, and divide an image with other images
or constants.
Coordinate Systems
Set up coordinate systems to ensure that all your
measurements move with the object within the field
of view.
Image Filters and Frequency Analysis
Frequency filters, such as the fast Fourier transform
(FFT), alter pixel values with respect to the periodicity
and spatial distribution of the variations in light
intensity in the image.
Image Segmentation
NI vision software comes with several options to
segment and partition images into related components.
Segmentation is an important part of many imaging
applications that need to extract certain features or
objects in order to process them further.
Golden Template Comparison
Find defects in an image by comparing a perfect
(golden) sample to all subsequent samples. Golden
template comparison detects surface defects, label
misprints, and overall quality issues.
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Configurable Machine Vision Software
Signal Input and Output
Vision Builder AI Development Toolkit
From Vision Builder AI, you can control the industrial digital I/O lines on
the NI Compact Vision System, PCI-8254R, NI PCIe-8255R, and any NIDAQmx data acquisition device to communicate inspection results to
other industrial devices such as PLCs. Beyond simple digital I/O, Vision
Builder AI can also output precise timing signals through pulse
generation and single-shot signals directly to actuators. Moreover, you
can acquire and transmit analog values on any M Series device from
Vision Builder AI in order to integrate data measurements with your
machine vision or generate analog values based on inspection results.
Machine builders, integrators, and advanced users can use the Vision
Builder AI Development Toolkit to develop professional-looking custom
steps that provide functionality not already included in Vision Builder AI.
For example, you can develop a custom step that drives a camera or other
hardware not currently compatible with Vision Builder AI. You also can
create a custom step to include a customized image-processing algorithm.
You can distribute custom steps in addition to the released version
of Vision Builder AI, providing your end users with a customized Vision
Builder AI package.
Industrial Communication
Deploying Inspections
From Vision Builder AI, you can also communicate with devices using
industrial protocols over serial or Ethernet ports and send inspection
data, inspection results, or customized data to PLCs, touch screens, or
industrial PCs.
To deploy your application, use a Vision Builder AI Run-Time license.
The run-time license is a low-cost way to replicate your inspection while
still allowing your operators and engineers to interact with the software
to view images, update parameters, and gather statistics. Each NI Compact
Vision System already comes with a Vision Builder AI Run-Time license.
Benchmark Your Inspections
Use the performance meter to see how fast the application will run. A
detailed view of the performance meter helps you identify time-consuming
individual steps.
Customize Inspections
Vision Builder AI is one of the most flexible menu-based vision software
packages and it includes several features with which end users can expand
and extend the environment to handle most machine vision applications.
• You can use the Run LabVIEW VI step to call any LabVIEW VI from
Vision Builder AI to expand its capabilities. Examples include report
generation tools, custom algorithms, communication routines, or virtually
any other LabVIEW VI. You do not need LabVIEW installed to use this step.
• You can extend the capabilities of your system by converting your
Vision Builder AI script to LabVIEW. Use this code to build a customized
user interface or to add more measurement or automation functionality
such as motion control and data acquisition.
Acquire with IEEE 1394
and GigE cameras
Find circular edges
Measure intensity
Find and match
Find and measure
straight edges
Communicate with
external devices such
as PLCs
Set up coordinate
Perform advanced
geometric analysis
Read text (OCR)
Detect and measure
Make caliper distance
Read 1D and 2D
bar codes
Find any number of
Calibrate measurements
to real-world units
Make pass/fail
Figure 1. Examples of the Many Functions Available in Vision Builder AI
Ordering Information
NI Vision Builder for Automated Inspection ........................778649-01
NI Vision Builder for Automated Inspection
Development Toolkit..........................................................779343-03
Run-Time License ..............................................................779799-03
NI Vision Builder for Automated Inspection Bundles
NI Vision Builder for Automated Inspection with:
PCI-8254R ..........................................................................779493-01
PCI-1426 ............................................................................779495-01
PCI-1410 ............................................................................779494-01
For complete product specifications, pricing, and accessory
information, call 800 813 3693 (U.S.) or go to
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Configurable Machine Vision Software
Save up to 25 Percent with
Vision Builder AI Hardware Bundles
pulse generation, and general-purpose digital I/O for communicating with
the other industrial components such as actuators, pneumatics, and PLCs.
National Instruments vision software includes hundreds of image
processing and analysis functions. A subset of the tools available in
the Vision Development Module and Vision Builder AI is shown below.
NI Vision
Continuous acquisition
Triggered acquisition
Camera configuration
Trigger output
Full frame-rate display with overlays
Write and read image files
For significant savings, you can purchase Vision Builder AI bundled with
one of three frame grabber options. With these bundles, you can acquire
images from analog, IEEE 1394, and Camera Link cameras. The hardware
in each bundle is described below.
The NI PCI-1410 four-channel analog frame grabber is suitable for
standard and nonstandard cameras. The PCI-1410 is recommended
for megapixel analog cameras (JAI CV-A1/A2, Sony XC-HR70, and more)
or standard resolution cameras (RS-170, NTSC, CCIR, PAL, and more)
when image quality is paramount.
The NI PCI-1426 low-cost Camera Link image acquisition board works
with any base-configuration Camera Link camera. The PCI-1426 has
isolated digital I/O accessible through a 15-pin D-Sub connector for
integrating triggers, encoders, and pulse generation into your application.
The NI PCI-8254R has multiple IEEE 1394 ports and 29 digital I/O lines,
and is reconfigurable with LabVIEW FPGA. You can access the digital I/O
lines for synchronizing vision components such as cameras, triggers, and
lights. You also can use quadrature encoder inputs, product selection lines,
Vision Builder for
Write and read AVI files
Image manipulation tools
Image filters
Image arithmetic
Image logic functions
Region-of-interest tools
Particle analysis
Object classification
Pattern matching
Geometric matching
Distortion calibration
Real-world measurements
1D and 2D bar code readers
Coordinate systems
Complex and fourier analysis
Optical character recognition
Color matching
Color pattern matching
Instrument reader
Performance benchmarking
LabVIEW VI generation
C code generation
VB code generation
Customizable user interface
Integration with motion control
Integration with data acquisition
Industrial communication protocols
Table 1. NI Vision Software Products
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NI Services and Support
NI has the services and support to meet
your needs around the globe and through
the application life cycle – from planning
and development through deployment
and ongoing maintenance. We offer
services and service levels to meet
customer requirements in research,
design, validation, and manufacturing.
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have high levels of skill and
knowledge on using NI products.
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